2023 Fei Zi Xiao
2023 Fei Zi Xiao
with juicy lychee notes
Crafted By the Li Family
- DATE OF PICKINGSpring 2023
- Wuyishan Ecological PreserveWuyishan, Fujian
- ELEVATION300 METERS
- FEIZI XIAOTea Varietal
This intriguing varietal is sometimes literally translated as Concubine’s Smile (or laugh), but in reality, the tea gets its name from the Feizi Xiao (妃子笑) fruit, a type of lychee so loved by a royal consort that it always made her smile. The name couldn't be more accurate for this stunning varieties, which truly tastes like lychee and peaches. An already luscious varietal gains even more complexity and nuance in the Mr. Li’s capable hands, finished with traditional sun-oxidation and gently fired. The minerality of the Li Family’s volcanic soil comes through beautifully, along with an impressive jasmine and honey aromatic complexity.
- truefruit90lychee, baked appletruesavory90strudel, oatmealtruespice90cedar, cinnamontruefloral80saffron, marigoldtruetingling, sweet
- fruit - lychee, baked apple
- savory - strudel, oatmeal
- spice - cedar, cinnamon
- floral - saffron, marigold
- texture - tingling, sweet
the Li Family also recommends:
- 2023 Bai Rui Xiang Wuyi Black TeaBai Rui Xiang varietal is named after the Winter Daphne, a heady aromatic flower native to China. Traditionally finished as an oolong, this tea always has a rich nuanced undercurrent of incense spice and cooling tingling minerality. This season, the Li Family saved a small portion of this reserve harvest Bai Rui Xiang to finish as a black tea using old-school sun-oxidation in bamboo baskets at the family workshop in Tongmu. The result is an incredibly complex black tea where the intense florals of the oolong finish take a back seat to the cooling tingling textural excitement this tea has to offer, along for a rich spiced brew full of Wuyi’s famous minerality.
- Hua Xiang Zheng Shan Xiao ZhongWhile Zheng Shan Xiao Zhong is usually smoked, the same leaf material and finishing technique can be used without the final smoking step. Hua Xiang means floral fragrance, referring to the natural but subtle floral notes in Xingcun Xiaozhong varietal that are brought out through the Li Family’s expert hand-processing. When smaller leaf material mixed with delicate buds is used, rich vanilla undertones can develop, accenting the savory nutty flavors. The main difference between this tea and a classic Wuyi Gongfu Black is that Zheng Shan Xiao Zhong is not necessarily curled and twisted as thoroughly, giving it a more open structure suitable for incorporating that smaller bud and leaf mixture that wouldn’t work in the tight twists of Wuyi Gongfu Black, but both are very traditional calls back to the very earliest black teas in the world.
- 2023 Wuyi Gongfu Black
Li Xiangxi works with her brother and cousins in the Wuyi Ecological Preserve to harvest this propagated-from-seed Xiaozhong varietal leaf and process it using traditional heap oxidization techniques and curling to bring out the tea’s natural complexity. Grown on a hillside in a ravine that collects a pocket of natural mist all morning, the tea buds slowly, yielding an incredibly sweet brew. The tea picks up mineral texture from the rocky volcanic soil and the natural spring water running through the Li Family’s plot. Deeper complexity comes from the natural genetic variation of allowing their Xiaozhong tea to grow from seed instead of cuttings, creating a rich multi-layered taste experience.
- 4620815 seconds10552085 seconds3412room temp8 hours
oz.use 208° watersteep 15 secondsresteep many times
add 10 sec. each infusion
Gongfu5 g.5 ozuse 208° watersteep 5 seconds
add 3 sec. per steepingenjoy many steepings
oz.use room temp. waterrefrigerate overnight
8 hoursadd ice & enjoy